Rainbow Six Extraction MIA operators explained and how to rescue your goons

Having Rainbow Six Extraction MIA operators explained will enable you to get them back when they go down, saving them from what we at GamesRadar have reflexively come to think of as a protective cocoon of spray cheese. After failing a mission in Rainbow Six Extraction, that operator gets “cheesed” and becomes MIA, meaning that they have to be rescued on a subsequent incursion. But what happens to them while they’re gone, what happens if you fail to rescue them, and what’s all this doing to your team’s experience? We’ll explain Rainbow Six Extraction MIA operators here and how you can save them properly.

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What happens to Rainbow Six Extraction MIA operators?

Rainbow Six Extraction MIA operators

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

Even the Rainbow Six Extraction best operators who go MIA are effectively trapped out in the field and can’t be selected for incursions until either they’re rescued, or until enough time has passed that the game returns them automatically. This seems to be a one-mission timer – i.e., you have to save them on the next incursion you do, or they’ll be brought back by the game on the incursion afterwards.

MIA operators and XP

Rainbow Six Extraction MIA operators

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

The thing is, it’s far better to collect MIA operators yourself rather than waiting for the game to do it, as Extraction uses a banked experience system to motivate these rescue missions. Any XP your operator has earned on the mission is locked to them when they get cheesed, and hasn’t been claimed until they return back to base. However, if you miss the opportunity to save them and the game has to do it for you, all that experience is lost. 

How to save MIA operators from Archaean trees

Rainbow Six Extraction MIA operators

(Image credit: Ubisoft)

If you lose an operator and they go MIA, you get them back by starting an incursion in the same area you lost them in. One of the three incursion objectives will be to save that operator, which involves ripping them out of an Archaean tree while it tries to absorb them back in. You can practice this minigame in the VR training mission as many times as you like, but here’s some helpful tips to give yourself and your trapped operator the best possible chance.

  • Archaean trees pull against your operator with a level of strength determined by the red circle on the left. The more full it is, the more likely you’ll start to lose progress.
  • The red circle fills when the anchor points send Archaean cells down the tendrils to the tree. Damaging these cells – glowing red balls – will destroy them before they can reach the tree.
  • When an anchor point sends out a cell, it opens like a flower. Shooting it at this point can destroy it temporarily, along with the tendril. However, shooting it while closed won’t do anything.
  • The number of active tendrils seems to increase with the number of players. You’ll need to all be on your toes, as having three operators on the field won’t necessarily make it easier.
  • The best thing you can do is have one operator permanently trying to extract the MIA operator, while one other player stays close by and shoots cells approaching the tree (as well as any Archaeans who get too close). The third player should be out and about, trying to cut off the flowers at their source and shooting any other energy spikes they see along the way with any of the best Rainbow Six Extraction guns.
  • If you’re on your own, get the meter as high as possible, then use that time to break away and shoot the anchor points ASAP. Get back quickly before the tree eats your friend.

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